Director Jeff Nichols
Director Jeff Nichols

Bakhtiar Khudojnazarov's "Waiting for the Sea" will open the 7th Rome Film Festival on November 9 2012.  Russian writer-director Khudojnazarov ("Luna Papa") spent six years creating the mythological epic "Waiting for the Sea."  In Khudojnazarov's movie, which has a magical realism vibe, the sea disappears, leaving a small town to suffer and slowly die away.  All seems lost until a sailor named Marat decides to drag his ship across the desert in order find the ocean that went missing.  Here's the Rome Film Festival blurb for the out-of-competition film:

"Sustained by an imposing vision that captures the breath-taking beauty of the vastness of Kazakh spaces, the film offers the viewer a world lost in time. Horses, camels, trains, airplanes, sidecars, trucks and ships. Magicians, fortune-tellers, sailors. Passion, adventure, betrayal, dreams. And love… Waiting for the Sea is total cinema. A film that proves that it is still possible to narrate spectacular adventures full of surprises and emotions and at the same time delve into the deepest-hidden recesses of the human soul."

The Festival competition jury, which runs until November 17th, will be presided over by screenwriter and director Jeff Nichols ("Take Shelter," "Mud").